Take 2… aaaaand, ACTION!

OK.  So, obviously it was harder than I thought to keep up a blog while homeschooling and taking care of everything else going on in my life.  Sorry for disappearing.  Here’s the cliffs notes from the last 8 months…

– Homeschooling overall went fine.  Chicka Roo loved being homeschooled and scored well above her peers at end of the year testing time.  We will continue to homeschool until it is no longer mutually beneficial for us.

– In November, I underwent abdominal surgery.  It should have been a quick overnight stay, but thanks to some severe complications, turned into a several week-long nightmare that continues to cause me issues even now.

– Once I was finally back on my feet and feeling well again, it was time for the next obstacle- MOVING.  As all good Army families do, we uprooted our family and moved across country.  We are now in Hampton, Virginia.

buried under boxes

– Our next major event will be taking place a week from today.  Daddy Roo (or, the original Buddy Roo, as some would call him) will be leaving for a one year unaccompanied tour to Korea.

That, incidentally, is what inspired me to get back on the blogging bandwagon.  My kids get such enjoyment from being able to show daddy what they’re doing in school.  Blogging reminds me to take pictures and keep a record of what we are working on.  Hopefully this will be a good way for us to keep him in the loop about what they’re learning and show off some of their favorite work.

For obvious reasons, this year will likely be a little more difficult than last year was.  However, we’re in a new place, with lots to explore, and new friendships to foster.  I hope you will come along side us as we take on this new adventure.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

It begins.

Well, today was day 2 of “official” homeschooling.  We have had a good couple of days.  We are definitely still working out the kinks of the schedule, but otherwise it’s been pretty good.

Here’s my beautiful babies on their first day.  Buddy Roo insists on doing “homework” with us every time we sit down, so we are calling this year preschool for him.  I’m actually hoping to get him into a preschool class locally, because he could really use the time away to get comfortable away from me, but we’ll have to see how that goes.

Chicka Roo has been a little bit sad about not starting school with her friends, but she also was excited to see that school only takes a few hours now.  Actually, it’s been taking all day, but we’ve been putting in some major breaks, and it’s really only about 2-3 hours total of school time.  And even that has been pretty fun, in her opinion.  This afternoon, she even started orchestra, in a local early beginners class.  Definitely something we wouldn’t have been able to fit into our schedule if she was at school all day.

The only thing that irritated her was learning alphabetical order- that was, until we started alphabetizing her princesses.  Then she was good.

She also particularly enjoyed using marshmallows and cheerios for practicing place value in math.  Buddy Roo’s task was just to count out the correct number and put them on the toothpick.

And finally, their favorite break time activity: putting on a princess ballet show.  As per the usual, Buddy Roo insisted on doing exactly what his big sister was doing.  Don’t judge 🙂

Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment


So, I was just looking at my massive bookmarks folder of curriculum helps and freebies online, and I realized for the first time that I can download the list in its entirety.  I thought it might be nice to share it here.  Many thanks to all of the amazing people who have provided the resources listed here.

Bookmarks bar


God’s Rules (Moses and Ten Commandments) – Kids Korner – BibleWise
Subject Index kidskonnect
2 Teaching Mommies: Snake Tracks Art



Dinosaur Report Printables
dinosaur lessons 2/3 way down
EasyFunSchool – Plaster of Paris Dinosaur Eggs
EasyFunSchool – Plaster of Paris Fossil
My Dinosaur Alphabet Book of Lower Case Letters
Our Crafts ~N~ Things » Blog Archive » Dinosaur Fossils
make dinosaur eggs
Dinosaur Cove | Scholastic.com
Earth Science Lesson Plans on Geologic Time Introduction




Desert Unit (USA) | The Homeschool Den
New Tab

experiments and projects


Just Call Me Jamin! » Blog Archive » All My Mad Science Posts
Scientific Method Printables
extracting natural flavors
making dried plant art
Homemade Science Lab « The Kitchen Pantry Scientist
Fun Science: Candy Experiments « mama smiles
Balloon Car
Homeschooling–Science / “This kept my 2 year busy for an entire hour and my 4 year old busy for 2 hours! YAY! Drop vinegar tinted with food coloring onto a pan filled with baking soda. Sheer minutes of colorful fizzy fun!”
Kitchen Science: Freezing and Melting |
family Easter science day EGG EXPERIMENTS
Crystal Egg Geodes – Martha Stewart Easter
Educational Videos: Bill Nye’s Science Demos | Disney Educational Productions
Kid Projects | Housing a Forest – Part 3
» 52 Totally Awesome Science Experiments You Can Do At Home
Mom to 2 Posh Lil Divas: Mad Science Theme
Ms. Fultz’s Corner: Science Day!
color changing carnations | paint cut paste
ZOOM . activities- experieents broken down by genre
Good Science Fair Projects


earth science


Water Cycle Wonders | Practical Pages
Mountains Minibooks & Notebook pages | Practical Pages
Geography ~ Learn About Hemispheres Minibook | Practical Pages
Learning Geography with “Simon Says” | Practical Pages
EasyFunSchool – Mini Unit – Earth Science
edible rocks, different types
EasyFunSchool – Epsom Salt Crystals – Make your own Epsom Salts, Epson Salt
EasyFunSchool – Unit Study on Volcanoes and Earthquakes



The Taylor House: Nature Scavenger Hunt for Kids


human body


human body crafts and activities… brain, skin etc

5 senses


The Five Senses
CAUTION! Twins at play!: Scented experiments
Learn All About the Five Senses | Preschool Science Lesson Plan | Primary Games
All About Your Senses: Experiments to Try




Human Body: Learning About Bones – Spell Out Loud
GCC Games Crafts Coloring – Parties – HALLOWEEN – Large printable skeleton


kidshealth.org body


outer space


Moon Phases Calendar 2012. Images of the eight (8) moon phases
easy solar oven
Solar System Song
Universe in a Jar
Constellation Art With Rocks and Sidewalk Chalk |
Pin the Sun Game
Homeschooling–Science / The Scale of the Universe 2
Eyes on the Solar System




{FREE} Weather Unit for ages 3-9 | Living Life Intentionally
Having Fun at Home: Three Art Mediums for Three Types of Clouds
The Inspired Classroom: Clouds Pt 2
{Play} Weather Blog Hop | Make Your Own Cloud | The Outlaw Mom (TM) Blog
Creative Connections! water play
Weather in a Jar
Making It Rain




EasyFunSchool – Blue Clouds: An Edible Chemical Reaction
make lightning
PLAY. EXPLORE. LEARN: Weather Watchers


Free science worksheets for use at home or in the classroom.



Construction Management Degree» Blog Archive » 100 Awesome Engineering Projects for Kids
Homeschool science courses and curriculum for homeschoolers
Spectra’s Force (2010)
Physics for Kindergarten through Middle School Classrooms
SciGirls | Projects
Scijinks :: Home Page




winter habitats
BBC – Learning Zone Broadband Class Clips – Darwin, animation – (video and audio search results)
Kids – National Wildlife Federation
Homework Helper – National Zoo| FONZ


ict games
Science Videos and Experiments by Robert Krampf, The Happy Scientist
DIY / great setup….instead if a headboard. Love the bookshelves ‘framing’ the bed, and especially love the lights over head for reading
week 2 Living and Nonliving
week 2 video is it alive
Teachers’ Domain: Living vs. Nonliving
chart of living vs non
great for first few weeks of science
differences in characteristics
Mr Collinson’s Grade 1 Science Resources – Units, Worksheets, and Lesson Plans
has units available for download



Inquiry in Action | Download Free Science Activities, Find information on Workshops, Learn Chemistry Fundamentals
The Periodic Table of Videos – University of Nottingham


Science Coloring Pages and Worksheets
Free K-5 Teacher Resources | Teachers | Discovery Education
Cool Science for Curious Kids
Homeschool Science Education
Homeschool Science Education
Science Fair Project Ideas, Answers, & Tools
Tree of Life Treehouses
Project Gutenberg – old science/geog curriculum
Home – Science NetLinks
Free Stuff | The Happy Scientist
Explore, Play, Discover: Websites & Activities | Exploratorium


HS blogs


Spanish | Confessions of a Homeschooler
PreschoolersandPeace – Preschoolers and Peace Blog
Weird Unsocialized Homeschoolers – Because most of us aren’t…but some of us are.
Fun in First Grade: Free Calendars


social studies






Ma Nouvelle Mode: Sand Pudding




Oceans Minibooks and Notebook Pages for Geography | Practical Pages
bears at the beach snack
Funny Fish Faces
Ocean Preschool Pack
We Give Books – Books




Rainforest Resources | kidworldcitizen




western expansion


Amazon.com: Pioneer Days – for kids
little house ideas and printables
Western Expansion – FREE American History Lesson Plans & Games for Kids
FREE American History Lesson Plans & Games for Kids
EasyFunSchool – Across the Wide and Lonesome Prairie (Part Five) unit study reading comprehension questions and activities, Westward Expansion Oregon Trail Pioneers Unit Study, Oregon Trail activities, Dear America unit study, Dear America lesson plans, Oregon Trail lesson plans, American History unit study curriculum
Little House on the Prairie Unit Study | LivingMontessoriNow.com
ingallsmap.jpg (673×833)
Pretty Little Pinafore « Sew,Mama,Sew! Blog
Dynamic 2 Moms – Westward Hooooo




FREE Ancient Egypt Unit Study and Lapbook
mummify barbies
Egyptian Mummies | Virtual Mummy
Ancient Egypt – FREE Ancient History Lesson Plans & Games for Kids
Adventures in Homeschooling: Ancient Egypt
Theodosia Throckmorton » Theodosia’s Bookshelf
Ancient Egypt Lapbook
Ancient Egypt Unit Study
We Give Books – Books
We Give Books – Books
Wild Egypt – The Nile Adventure – 1
Welcome to Neferchichi’s Tomb at neferchichi.com
MrDonn.org – Ancient Civilizations
egypt story
Stories Resources Page
Ancient Egypt for Kids – Color Me Egypt
Ancient Egypt for Teachers – Index
Talking Pyramids: Ancient Egyptian Games


american girls, whole bunch of ideas
great for timeline, early history

Ancient Greece


Ancient Greece for Kids & Teachers – Lesson Plans, Games, Powerpoints, Clipart – Come meet the Greeks!
greek mythology stories
Greek Myths for Children
Greek Mythology




The Renaissance Lesson Plans & Games for Kids
Magnificent Medieval Times


middle ages


Middle Ages for Kids
Deep Space Sparkle – Watercolor castle art project
Educational Stories- has king arthur stories
Mosaic 2 – Adventures in the Middle Ages


Civil War


Civil War (War Between the States) – FREE American History Lesson Plans & Games for Kids
Getting to know Abraham Lincoln
Mission 2 | Mission US | THIRTEEN


Industrial revolution


Industrial Revolution – FREE American History Lesson Plans & Games for Kids




American Revolution – FREE American History Lesson Plans & Games for Kids
MrDonn.org – Origins and Creation of American Government – Lesson Plans
mrdonn.org – Government Lesson Plans, Powerpoints, Games, Videos, more
21 Fun Presidents Day Activities & Crafts — Tip Junkie
Adventure Tales of America – Illustrated U.S. History Books
American History – Mind-Fires Academy


world exploration


Early New World Explorers – FREE American History Lesson Plans & Games for Kids
Explorers Lesson Plans & Games for Kids
BBC – Primary History – Vikings




The Great Depression – FREE American History Lesson Plans & Games for Kids
History Is Elementary: Great Depression


civil rights


Civil Rights Movement – FREE American History Lesson Plans & Games for Kids
martin luther king jr




World War I Lesson Plans




World War II Lesson Plans


funny history parodies, mostly ancient
loads of history printables and crafts
maybe more for older kids but still good descriptions for all topics
9/11 teachable moment
Free History Worksheets for Elementary School
The Montessori Great Lesson Page- kinda advanced



Dynamic 2 Moms – Ancient Civilizations




Humans Change the World | The Smithsonian Institution’s Human Origins Program
Prehistoric Times
A Science Odyssey: You Try It: Human Evolution
How to Talk to Your Kids About Evolution and Creation – Probe Ministries
The Pearcey Report
Homeschool Resources in Creation Science
In the Beginning
Made in Eden
Your Children and Evolution – Answers in Genesis
Ancient Civilizations: Early Humans
Evolution – Early Humans for Kids
Human Evolution by The Smithsonian Institution’s Human Origins Program
World History For Us All: Big Era 1- use this week 2
Little City Kids : Daily Lesson Plans


once upon a time – YouTube
Free Lesson Plans: Mosaic Introduction to World History Part 1: Myths, Maps, and Marvels
Learning Through History News – Archives
MacroHistory : World History
BBC – Schools – Primary History
World History For Us All: History, Geography, and Time – Getting Started


Map Adventures – Index
MrDonn.org Social Studies – FREE Lesson Plans Activities Games Powerpoints Handouts – for Kids and Teachers
Treasure hunt and Letterboxing! | Practical Pages



Red Ted Art’s Blog » Blog Archive » Olympics – crafts & activities
Little Passports – A Global Online Adventure for Children and Kids (educational games, activities, learning, toys)






Europe | kidworldcitizen




Asia | kidworldcitizen




Australia and Oceania | kidworldcitizen




Africa | kidworldcitizen
The Americas | kidworldcitizen


Planet Earth Videos : Discovery Channel
Free Geography Worksheets for Elementary School
Homeschooling–Geography and Social Studies / video of continent song
d-maps.com : free maps, free blank maps, free outline maps, free base maps
Seterra Online – Free Map Quiz Games
Elementary Matters: Mapping Freebie
MrNussbaum.com – Mr. Nussbaum’s World Geography
World Wide Wanderings: Continents & Oceans Printable
Roll into Geography! (FREE GAME) | Living Life Intentionally
Ready. Set. Read!: Finding My Place in This World
Counting Coconuts: Our Continent Bags
Counting Coconuts: Our Continent Bags – North America
Choose a Country Unit Study- many resources
FREE Country Lapbook Templates
Free Country Lapbook – Homeschool Helper
Multicultural Paper Dolls
World Maps – geography online games
Printable Maps – Reference


respect for all lesson- diversity
our water footprint
kidworldcitizen | Activities that help young minds go global
community helpers crossword

listing by unit


Themed worksheets for early childhood education that you can print for free!
ThinkQuest : Category
1+1+1=1…Kindergarten Printables
Mrs. Fischer’s Kinder~Themes




FirstGradeFriends: Social Studies Vocabulary Cards




Ben’s Guide: Grades K-2
Ben’s Guide to U.S. Government for Kids


Free online elementary social studies interactive learning games and activities
Kids’ Games, Animals, Photos, Stories, and More — National Geographic Kids
Theme Sets- natl geo
Social Studies for Kids
Free the Slaves – Education Download Packs
MrDonn.org Social Studies – FREE Lesson Plans Activities Games Powerpoints Handouts – for Kids and Teachers




Make A Floor Number Line | Stories and ChildrenStories and Children

base 10, place value


Classroom Freebies Too: Ship Shape Tens
tattling to the teacher: Place Value and a Freebie
Mrs. T’s First Grade Class: Place Value with beads
cups for place value and alphabetical order




Classroom Freebies Too: Working with Coins
Classroom Freebies Too: Money Counting Freebie!


greater than less than


Classroom Freebies Too: Greater Than/ Less Than Monster!




I ♥ mathematics {platonic solids garland} | Mini-eco




Filth Wizardry: Two types of homemade balance scales from recycling
Leptir – Montessori blog: Brrrrrrr …. zima


KB…Konnected • 40+ Resources for Dice and Everything Dice…



Classroom Freebies Too: It’s TIME for a freebie.




Classroom Freebies Too: Adding 3 Numbers
Kinder-Craze ways to make 8
Johnnie’s Math Page – The Best Math for Kids and their Teachers -Hundreds of Interactive Math Tools, Math Activities, and Math Games


rounding and estimation



Homeschooling–Math / Fun With Fractions Felt Board Flannel Board by teachablemoment
Johnnie’s Math Page – The Best Math for Kids and their Teachers -Hundreds of Interactive Math Tools, Math Activities, and Math Games




Tales of Frogs and Cupcakes: DIY Graphing Mat


Math Teaching Resources for K-5 Classrooms
First Grade Garden: Math Stations – Set 1
math page
Free Math Worksheets, Problems and Practice | AdaptedMind
has math games and worksheets both
math games
ict games
Matheez on GPBKids.org
Math Games Help To Motivate Students And Make Learning Fun.
Big Brainz Multiplication Games- has addition and subtraction too
living math book list
some different types of math
cool older math book- love this
XtraMath – Student Sign-In
NLVM Number & Operations Manipulatives
MATTI Math Interactive Learning Activities for K-12





language arts


Literactive – Teaching Children to Read



Parts of Speech Printables
Homeschool Tools





mrs. prince & co.: 4 Types of Sentences flip book…and snow!
englishbanana.com – Print Your Own: Big Grammar Book > Free Worksheets for English, EFL and ESL Lessons
Childrens Mad Libs
Small Print Manuscript Handwriting Lessons
D’Nealian Handwriting Worksheet Maker – Multiword
Handwriting Help for Kids: Workbooks, Information, Advice and Free Worksheets.


learning to read


Magic E Frog Game | Stories and ChildrenStories and Children
pawpark2 alphabetical order
Short I Sound Packet
Long A Sound Worksheet 2
Long I Sound Worksheet 2
Long A Sound Worksheet 3
Long A Sound Worksheet 1
Jake and the Long A Sound
Long I Sound Worksheet 3
Long I Sound Worksheet 1
Vowel Centers | Have Fun Teaching
posting plurals
word families cardboard tube idea
Literacy Centers
Seusstastic Classroom Inspirations: Candy Land Games
Phonics lessons videos
phonics lessons breakdown chart
phonics lessons schedule
stairway to reading lessons
stairway to reading materials
catphonics- has lessons, games etc
Reading Bear – learn to read for free!
Readeez= cite little book videos
Mrs. Perkins’ Dolch Words- has activities etc
Progressive Phonics- has books with worksheets and activities
scott foresman text activities and worksheets
printable booklets for reading




read aloud books, whole bunch
Books Every Geek Should Read to Their Kids | GeekDad | Wired.com
75 Books That Build Character | No Time For Flash Cards – Play and Learning Activities For Babies, Toddlers and Kids
Classic Authors
Classical Christian Education Support Loop: 1000 Good Books List: Primary Reading Level 1-3
Read Along with Georgia Read More!
aesop’s fables
LibriVox: Search Results
early reader I see Sam books
manybooks.net – Genres
We Give Books – Books
HumaneEducation.org- character education book list
HumaneEducation.org- environment book list
animal protection book list
food and diet book list
media culture consumerism book list
human rights book list
American Folklore: Famous American folktales, tall tales, myths and legends, ghost stories, and more.


Free Printable English Worksheets



sight word daddy « Craft Nectar
The Moffatt Girls: Color by Sight Word Sentences!
First Grade Spelling Lists
eduBakery.com – Home Page
Spelling & Vocabulary Website: SpellingCity


My Photos
ict games
Reading Manipulatives | Tips For Teachers | Decoding and Blending Tips
Phonics Consonant Blends Worksheets
amazing printable workbook, perfect for 1st
treasures spelling
expansions on scholastic books
treasures grammar practice




2 Teaching Mommies8:15-Memory Verse Extras
Bible Verse Printables and activities
Video » What’s In The Bible
…Joyful Mama’s Place…: Creation Collage
Free Bible Crafts and Bible Activities
Genesis – Bible Coloring Pages | What’s in the Bible?
Free Lesson Plans for Teaching Children • KidExplorers™ at ChristianAnswers.Net
childrens sermons
How Can You Talk With Your Children About Evolution? – Good News Magazine | United Church of God
An Evangelical Dialogue on Evolution: Teaching Creation in Sunday School
The Age of the Earth Debate
Young Age Evidence – Answers in Genesis
Creation Myths – A Large and Diverse Collection of Links to Creation Myths from Around the World – creation myth,creation myths,creation mythology,creation myths from around the world,creation myths from different cultures,creation story,creation stories




Independence Day eBook
1+1+1=1 — Never planned to homeschool, now wouldn’t trade it for the world



Room Mom 101: Easter Egg Matching Activity


multi subject listings


Homeschool Creations — Resources, free printables, and encouragement for homeschool families
Classroom Free
Lesson Pathways: Building Paths for Online Learning
Free Printable First Grade Worksheets
Homeschool Printables
games for all subjects
Free Homeschool Lessons, Free Homeschool Resources, Free Homeschool Activities | Everything Homeschooling
ipad apps by age, great list!
Learning Games: Math and Reading Sidewalk Chalk Activities
WOW! Breaks down by PO and lists games and sites
Guesthollow.com – Homeschool Curriculum, Printables & Resources
Free Online Kids Learning Games | Online Kids Games | Cool Math Games for Kids | Reading and Writing Skill for ESL/EFL Learner
games for all subjects- scholastic
Apples4theteacher.com – A Primary Website – Educational Games and Activities for Kids
Virtual Field Trips—LDS Homeschooling in California—and everywhere!
First Grade Fever!
Heather’s Heart
what i can stream on discovery
Free K-5 Teacher Resources | Teachers | Discovery Education
Discovery Education > | Satori Smiles
Discovery Education streaming Homeschool – NEW SUBSCRIPTION – Discovery Education Store
The Lesson Plans Page
Fun, FREE Hands-on Unit Studies
Cookie ™ | Learning Games for Kids | Kids Online Games for Elementary School
Educational Videos and Games for Kids about Science, Math, Social Studies and English
The “Free” List LOOK AT THIS LATER! great resources by subject
1+1+1=1…Raising Rock Stars Kindergarten
BBC – Schools: Educational resources from the BBC
Charlotte Mason Help: Free Curriculum
Guesthollow.com – Homeschool Curriculum, Printables & Resources
Head of the Class
AO Year 1 – AmblesideOnline.org
Freeware Lane – Free Games from FamilyGames.com
Free Homeschooling Unit Studies Online: Unit Topics Starting with A | TheHomeSchoolMom.com
SchoolExpress.com – 17000+ FREE worksheets
Free Homeschooling Unit Studies Online: Unit Topics Starting with A | TheHomeSchoolMom.com
Usborne Quicklinks: USA: Home
Fact Monster: Online Almanac, Dictionary, Encyclopedia, and Homework Help — FactMonster.com


Unit studies








Farm Animal Families |


outer space


1+1+1=1…Solar System Preschool Pack


Free Holiday Worksheets for Christmas, Easter, Thanksgiving, Valentine’s Day, and more.
Sports worksheets, coloring pages, puzzles, and more for kids AND parents.



Robot Preschool Pack




Monster Math 20.pdf – Google Docs
Finding My Marbles- has cute monsters out of tissue boxes




Kids In The Kitchen – Mini Apple Pies | Gather




Rowdy in First Grade: Five Egg-cellent Ideas with plastic eggs!


nursery rhymes


Nursery Rhymes




Justice League Printables « Mariah DeMarco










hungry caterpillar


Navy Wife, Navy Life. Watch me sink or swim.: The Very Hungry Caterpillar: Wall art!




Play Dinosaur Games with Professor Ridley!




Free Foreign Language Worksheets and Coloring Pages for Kids.
OnlineFreeSpanish.com – La familia – Family
La Familia – YouTube
Handy Family Vocab 1 – Family Members – YouTube
Salsa Episodes- holy crap, awesome
Slangman’s World! words in many languages




Free Music Worksheets and Music Coloring Pages for Kids.
Mr. Greg’s Musical Madness
peter and the wolf
Classics for Kids
teoría – Music Theory Web




Spelling Worksheets 1-50 for elementary school




Mocha Cupcakes with Espresso Buttercream Frosting


virginia move


The Pines of Newpointe Apartments For Rent in Virginia Beach, Virginia – Apartment Rental and Community Details – ForRent.com
Balfour Beatty Communities




Just Dance Kids – The Hamster Dance Song (Wii Rip) – YouTube
How To Teach Yoga To Children Through A Story | LIVESTRONG.COM


kid art


Finding My Marbles: make watercolors from old markers
Art lessons for kids- GREAT lessons, broken down by age!
week 2 – Fish Collage Art Lesson


art curriculum/ideas


Teaching Blog Addict: Art
how to draw things
how to draw / a sea turtle
on the bottom has art and muisic
amazing kids art page- interactive, games, featured artists and pieces
Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History | The Metropolitan Museum of Art
Art Projects for Kids
art lessons by artist, and grade level




Homeschooling / I love how this Mom documents her homeschooling. So inspiring!
DIY light table for preschool | Teach Preschool




week 3 haydn dynamics
Music Education Lesson Plans – Music Theory




Welcome! – KidsHealth in the Classroom




Letter of the week




Microsoft Research FUSE Labs – Kodu Game Lab
Scratch | Home | imagine, program, share
Computer Science Unplugged |


current events


Time For Kids




plunge business card




Free Printables
Sailing Through 1st Grade: August 2011

Lady Bug Learning Playset A Montessori and Waldorf by MamaMayI

There Once Was a Crooked Rainbow Building and by MamaMayI on Etsy
make flannel board by gluing pics to flannel


kid activities


Dirt and Boogers: Colored Water Play


Busy Kids = Happy Mom: Life Skills
Free Dinosaur Graphics
Laughing Pizza
Buy TN210 Compatible Toner Cartridge Value Bundle online at SuppliesOutlet.com- TN210VB
Brother HL 3040CN / 3070CW / MFC 9010CN / 9120CN / 9320CW Compatible Toner Cartridge – New Customer Special | The Supplies Guys
Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment

We made it back, everyone intact….

Title says it all.  The children did NOT stage a coup and leave us stranded on the highway.  There were, however, moments in which I would have preferred that to being in the car with the 3 of them.  This is how we traveled the 2nd and 3rd legs of our journey (3000+ miles)


The middle kiddo is my nephew, who for the purposes of this blog I’ll call Scoocha Roo, since his nickname as a baby was Scooch and I STILL want to call him that at least a few times a day.  Hey, everyone here has to be a roo, right?

Anyway, the trip from Houston to California was very long, but we made it.  We had a great week at my mother in law’s house.  I think I’m the only one of my friends who actually really likes their mother in law.  She is really cool, and an inspiration for a lot of fun activities that I’ll be incorporating into school this year.  That’s not to say that there’s not a few, er, fun personalities, in both of our families, of course. 🙂

A few pictures from our Texas and California visits….

Then, when we got back, my plan was to start homeschooling officially, since the public schools here have started.  Scoocha Roo was game for participating with us until it is time for him to go home.  That turned out to be a lot harder than we thought it would.  He was not real excited about most of the things I’d set up (even the fun stuff!  Come on, base 10 rods are just like blocks… right?  LOL).  And then Chicka Roo started to take on a little bit of his “this is soooo lame” attitude.  That was a problem, for sure, because one of my favorite things about her is that she has not yet learned that school is (supposedly) lame.  Hopefully homeschooling will keep that attitude away for a few more years at least.  Anywho, I decided that it wasn’t worth risking ruining her attitude, or frankly dealing with his, so we’re going to have our official “first day of school” next Monday, August 13.  Stay tuned for my inevitably terrified and stressed out post after that!

We did go ahead with a few of the left-over fun activities from our ocean unit.  We are going to be learning base 10 and place value concepts in math, so we did a Base 10 Beach game (found on teacherspayteachers.com- if you haven’t checked it out yet, you definitely should!).  Then we did base 10 fishing.  We put number magnets, along with seashells and glitter fish art projects (at Buddy Roo’s insistence) in the “ocean” (blue rug) and the kids fished for 2- and 3-digit numbers.  They then had to represent the number they’d caught with the base 10 cubes.  It was a great way to introduce the topic, and they both had fun, even Scooch.


and we had a few ocean themed snacks and meals…. (are you noticing a theme here?  Only a month in to the homeschool experience, and already it is obvious that food projects are our favorite… hehe)

deep sea marshmallows


“fish sandwiches”

And ocean pudding (vanilla pudding with blue food coloring, and then crushed oreo/nilla mixture for the “beach”)

Other than those activities, though, it’s been mostly fun and games here.  Scooch was really excited to see that we lived in the mountains, and immediately asked if we could go mountain climbing.  We took the kids to one of our favorite places, Council Rock in the Dragoon mountains, just a few miles away.  (http://www.gvrhc.org/Library/CochiseStronghold.html)

my little courageous explorer… aka, the reason I almost had a heart attack… 

and a cool shot of the monsoon storms from the stronghold

It’s been weird, adjusting to having a 3rd child around.  I don’t know how you mamas of many do it.  With the 3 of them, it seems like someone is literally ALWAYS throwing a fit, yelling, tattling, sneaking something they’re not supposed to, etc.  I know it’s probably mostly because we’ve thrown an older kid into the mix, since my kids normally don’t act like this, but man, I am exhausted.  We will miss Scooch a lot (he goes home tomorrow, riding with me back to Texas when I go to MOPS convention), but it’ll also be good to get into our regular, more structured, routine.  That is, once I figure out what it’ll be.  Wish me luck!





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Ocean fun

We’ve moved on from the desert, and now we’re getting into the ocean unit.  This is our favorite so far, as my kids LOVE the ocean and are going through withdrawls in this hot, dry, Arizona summer.  They ask for the beach all the time…

Anyway, we are starting to get into the rhythm of things.  We try to do at least one fun activity (fun by her crazy high standards, that is) and also some ‘regular’ stuff.  We are using some great printables from 2 Teaching Mommies: http://www.2teachingmommies.com/2011/08/oceans-updated.html

We’ve been busy watching movies and reading books as well… favorites are the Little Mermaid, Finding Nemo, Disney’s Oceans, and we have more on the list.  Their favorite books so far have been “Boat & Wind” by Steve Tiller (great book about trusting God and not losing faith), and “There’s a Sea in my Bedroom,” by Margaret Wild, which is one of my childhood favorites, and that I may or may not have borrowed from my parents house :).  Sorry, mom… we’re taking good care of it.

Yesterday, we needed to work on some math and spelling, but I didn’t want to do worksheets.  So we used some seashells to make it “ocean” math and spelling.  She had fun writing and answering math problems using the shells, and then we painted some letters on our shells and used them to spell her spelling words.  Fun stuff!

Today, we did our ocean diorama.  Apparently, that’s the one thing that she MUST do during each biome unit.  It’s the thing she looks forward to most.  We have been learning about the different geographical features under the ocean, so we built them out of playdoh and then added some ocean animals and plants.  She especially liked putting the magma underground under the volcano.

Now I’ve just got to figure out how to keep Buddy Roo’s fingers out of it… the blue food coloring would be a disaster if he knocked it over.

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quick update…

I haven’t had much to post in the last week- it’s been mostly full of other activities- watching my friends’ kids, some summer fun activities with the family, and planning for our upcoming trip to Texas/California.  We are driving FOUR THOUSAND + miles with 2 and then 3 kids (picking my nephew up from Texas and bringing him back with us).  Wish me luck.  If I don’t blog again within a few weeks, call the police… the kids probably have us tied up in the back of the Highlander somewhere off the freeway in California.  

In the meantime, here are a few pictures of our new homeschool “area.”  We don’t have a homeschool room, though I’m hoping to change that when we move next spring.  It’s our dining room.  But we now have a few shelves dedicated to our supplies and books, which I’m pretty proud of, so here they are 🙂




I know it’s not much, but we are excited just to have a space ready to go.  I’ll be back with more after our trip (or at least, let’s hope so!).

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More desert unit activities

Hello again!  We are still dragging our feet through the desert (unit, that is).  This week was more laid back, as we spent a lot of time with friends and playing outside etc.  We did do some school time, though, at Chicka Roo’s request.

One of the things we did was a desert sunset art project.  This one was pretty near and dear to our hearts, because we do love our sunsets here in Arizona.   It’s one of the few things that I know I will miss about this place.  The kids had a good time picking the tissue paper colors for our sky.  

and getting sticky with mod podge

We used texture spray paint for the sand pieces (well, this was a mama roo job)…

and here’s the finished products.

We also did sand art bottles.  I love dollar tree- I always find cute little stuff there to supplement what we’re learning.

We also learned about Moses and the Israelites wandering in the desert.  We talked about how that must have been.  It’s so hot here in southern Arizona that we can’t stay outside for more than 20 minutes during the daytime.  Imagine wandering in this (or worse) for 40 YEARS!  Talk about a test of faith!  We learned about how they followed the cloud and fire, not knowing where they would be going, and probably wondering if this path was ever going to lead them to the promised land.   We did a little activity where we packed a box of “treasures” (again, dollar tree…), but then instead of giving it to them, I hid it while they weren’t looking.  Then, I led them around the house in an epic round of follow-the-leader.  We weaved in and out of the same rooms, over and over, for a good 10 minutes or so.  That might not sound like very long, but in a small house, with small kids, it got the point across. Even 2 year old Buddy Roo was like “mom, we’ve already been in here.”  But they trusted me, and eventually I led them to the treasure.  Hopefully, it helped them to grasp a little bit of what the Israelites’ frustration must have felt like, and what kind of faith they would have had to have on their journey.

After that, we picked out some stones, and the kids made a little memorial.  We talked about how the 12 tribes built a memorial after they crossed the Jordan, to help them remember how God led them through.  So we wrote out some of our blessings to help us remember as well.  Please excuse the bad pictures again- I am REALLY ready to get my camera back.

That’s it for the interesting things this week.  For what it’s worth, we also do boring worksheets,  we sit and read together, and have done some fun printables from other wonderful blogs and sharing sites.  They’re not exactly interesting though, so I’m not planning on blogging about them 🙂  I have, however, been taking pictures of all of them, to keep as a record.  Arizona has very lax regulations (read: none) regarding homeschooling, but since we’ll be moving a lot, I want to make sure I still keep good records, just in case.  My original plan was to scan her work, but taking pictures is so much faster!

For you experienced homeschoolers out there- how do you keep records?  Do you keep a lot of the actual work, or store it digitally, or just mostly toss it out and cross your fingers?

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